The Direct to Video Connoisseur

I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at] I'd love to check out what you got.



Hi everyone, it's been a while since I checked the page, and I wanted to make a few announcements.

First and foremost, it appears a dubious site has claimed the old url, meaning any link in any review that goes to the old mattmovieguy url is corrupt. I'm in the process of trying to remove them all, but it's a lot! It's best not to click on any link without hovering over it first to make sure it doesn't have mattmovieguy in the url.

Second, it appears since my last trip to the blog, Photobucket has decided to charge for third party hosting, meaning none of my images are appearing anymore. That's simply an aesthetic issue, but still annoying.

Thank you all for your patience, and again, hopefully this will all be fixed soon.


Sunday, October 21, 2007

Highlander: The Source (2007)

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As much as I love bad movies, I also love syndicated action shows. Renegade, Hercules, BeastMaster, and especially Highlander. I got all the episodes on DVD. Adrian Paul as Duncan MacLeod is pretty much the man as far as I can tell, and just as the series was getting stale around the third season, they added in the equally cool Peter Wingfield as Methos. When I heard they were making a new movie, I was stoked. When it suddenly premiered on Sci-fi one Saturday night, I was more than pleasantly surprised. When I watched it... a whole 'nother story...

Highlander: The Source is the fifth Highlander movie, and the second with Adrian Paul. I couldn't fully discern from the poorly developed script, but I think it takes place in Eastern Europe in the future. But it's not too far in the future, because Joe Dawson, who isn't immortal, is still alive. Anyway, times have gotten so bad that the planets are huge and visible in the night sky and their gravitational pull has no effect even when they're that close. Methos and some of the other boys think it's The Source, some kind of mythical not-so-mythical place from which Immortals came. Duncan's been kind of crabby lately because his woman ditched him because he can't have kids, but he comes across Joe Dawson who tells him he's gotta join Methos in looking for The Source. They're also chased by the Guardian, who's played by Mr. Sinister from the X-Men comics. In the end, they find The Source in the woods in Europe, Duncan fights the Guardian, and learns that the "There Can Be Only One" means he can have a kid.

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As a fan of Highlander, this was a huge disappointment. There were story arcs during the TV series that blew this movie away. I watched this with some people who weren't Highlander fans, and they just thought it sucked. For days afterwards, we were asking each other: "Wow, what the hell was going on in that Highlander movie?" It may have been worse than Highlander 2: The Quickening. There, I said it.

I wish I had a "What was cool" section, but I really don't. There wasn't any great sword fights, no nicely choreographed martial arts, and no well-done period flashbacks. In fact, there weren't any flashbacks at all. The whole concept for this movie was just marinated and sauteed in wrong sauce. Someone needed to be a man and step in during the film making process and halt this production. From conception to execution, this movie was a disaster.

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The bad guy, The Guardian, was supposed to be cool I guess. He looked like Mr. Sinister, and he'd shoot around the screen really fast. The problem was the effect that made him shoot around the screen looked like ten kinds of lame. This is especially distressing, when you consider that the TV show The Flash did a much better job depicting someone going really fast, and that show predated Highlander: The Series even. The only cool thing the bad guy did was sing Queen's "Who Wants to Live Forever?" As far as Highlander villains go, he was no Kalus, no Xavier St. Cloud (played by Fine Young Cannibals' Roland Gift), no Bruce Payne-- hell, he wasn't even as good as Rowdy Roddy Piper and his one episode as a baddie. What a waste.

Now I know when examining a movie about people who can magically live forever I shouldn't be dwelling on issues like physics, but it was ridiculous how close planets like Jupiter and Neptune were to Earth. They were so visible in our sky that they were bigger than the moon. I guess what they're saying is The Source can manipulate gravity, but I don't know. It just looked so silly. This was another instance where someone needed to sit the director or whomever down and have a little talk. This is something I'd expect from an abhorrently bad sci-fi movie, not a quasi-respected franchise like this. And what's worse was how indicative it was of the rest of film. Just stupid.

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Adrian Paul and Peter Wingfield were themselves in this, which was cool, but they had so little to work with it didn't matter. This was so bad they must've had the same feeling in the pit of their stomachs that LeVar Burton and Brent Spiner do when the shoot scenes for Star Trek movies wearing an air filter and white speckled face paint respectively. This material was equally silly. With characters as cool as MacLeod and Methos, you've got so many possibilities, it's hard to really screw up. But this was botched so badly. It was like Van De Velde on the 18th for the British Open. Maybe worse.

As far as I know, you can't rent this or buy it yet. It was released in Europe, but here you can only catch it on Sci-Fi for the time being. That's good, because that allows people to know what they're getting into with very little risk. The only thing you have to lose is two hours of your life, or in my case, 100 minutes after I fast forwarded all the commercials. If you're a Highlander fan like me, this is a huge disappointment. If you're not a Highlander fan, this just plain sucks.

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1 comment:

  1. It was worse than the worst HL episode. I saw it a few months back when the Russian DVD version was released. I wasn't expecting it to be great, but they managed to exceed even my very low expectations! And then some.